OHA utility survey needs service member input

ST_survey_750x421By U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs

U.S. Army Europe is asking service members in Germany who are residing off-post in privately leased or rental housing to take part in the annual housing survey. The survey is instrumental in ensuring accurate housing allowance rates for military families living off post.

This survey is critical for ensuring Overseas Housing Allowance rates are properly set at overseas locations and directly affects the amount of housing allowance paid to service members.

“Taking the survey allows service members to have a direct impact on the amount of Utility and Recurring Maintenance allowance they will draw as part of their Overseas Housing Allowance,” stated Randall Ries, the Germany Country Allowance Coordinator.

The Defense Travel Management Office will begin its month long OHA utility survey on March 1.

“Individual responses to questions are kept confidential,” Ries said, “Last year service members saw a $14.00 a month increase to the utility allowance. In 2012 we had a $59 increase and in 2013 we had a $17 increase.”

An exemption from this survey includes homeowners or those sharing rent with another service member.

Spouses are authorized to take the survey if the service member is deployed or unavailable.

A link to the survey will be active Mar. 1-31 and can be found at: https://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/oha-util-mar.cfm